By Sabrina Bates
MVP Regional News Editor
A $100,000 bond was set during a court appearance Wednesday in Weakley County General Sessions Court for a Martin man charged with second-degree murder.
Mantaring Okie Woolridge, 44, was arrested by the Martin Police Department on Tuesday, April 25, in connection with the Saturday, April 22, shooting death of Terry Wilson, Jr., 39, of Martin.
According to a press release issued by the MPD on April 25, Wilson was shot at 406 N. Lindell St. in Martin around 5:17 p.m. that Saturday. The location houses the barber shop, Haircuts R Us. Police officers located Wilson’s body behind the building next door at 408 N. Lindell St., that houses the Exchange Club Carl Perkins Center (formerly known as Reelfoot Bank).
MPD Asst. Police Chief Phillip Fuqua said Wilson traveled to that location after the shooting incident. Wilson was pronounced dead at the scene having suffered at least one apparent gunshot wound from a 9-mm handgun. An autopsy is being conducted of Wilson’s body.
Woolridge reportedly made the call to 911 after the incident.
According to the MPD incident report, Woolridge told officers Wilson came into his shop beating on a trash can and throwing trash around. The report further notes Woolridge told officers that Wilson attempted to cause bodily harm and a “firearm was discharged.”
An affidavit of complaint, filed in General Sessions Court by the MPD, cites Woolridge admitted to shooting Wilson in an act of self-defense. According to the affidavit, “an investigation revealed Wilson did not have a weapon.”
On March 26, Wilson was charged with (simple) domestic assault and assault from an incident at 109 Ivie Cir. in Martin. According to an affidavit, two victims told officers Wilson was upset about being evicted from the location and was punching walls, throwing things and hitting them. The report further notes Wilson was on top of the victims and juveniles had to “get him off” of the victims. Wilson had a May 10 court appearance for the incident. The case was dismissed this week in General Sessions Court as a result of Wilson’s death.
Woolridge has another court appearance at 8:30 a.m. on Wednesday, May 3. The court date is listed as a preliminary hearing, but an attorney is not listed for Woolridge. Preliminary hearings are cases presented in front of a judge by the District Attorney’s office to determine if there is enough evidence to send the case to the Weakley County Grand Jury. A grand jury will hear the evidence and make a determination on indicting an individual on felony charges. If a grand jury returns an indictment, the case is sent to the 27th Judicial District Circuit Court where those charged have the option to plea or request a trial.
The Weakley County Grand Jury meets in September, January and May each year.
Woolridge will also have the option to waive his preliminary hearing, which would send the case directly to the next term of the grand jury.
As of today (Friday), Woolridge remained housed in the Weakley County Detention Center. Fuqua said the incident is an active investigation and witnesses are being interviewed, with more witnesses expected to be questioned.